(PHOTO: Ukrainian protester smashes Lenin statue after it was toppled in Kiev)
(12-12-13) The political & economic crisis in Ukraine continues as demonstrators tore down a statue of Lenin in Ukraineâ€™s capital Kiev protesting President Yanukovichâ€™s policies of cozying up to Russia and rejecting closer ties to the European Union. So will Ukraine become the next Cyprus, another basket case that needs â€œbail-inâ€ money to stay afloat?
No, because so far Ukraine has become effectively reabsorbed by Russia which exemplifies their former status as a colony of the Soviet Empire. Also Ukraine with a population of 46 million has only $20 billion in reserves which is equivalent to 2-1/2 months of imports, which is worse than Egypt.
Russia wants to make sure that Ukraine remains a defacto vassal state of the Russian Federation in Putinâ€™s five or six year effort to reabsorb Ukraine and the Trans-Caucasus states. The Russians can not act overtly because they signed on to the Commonwealth of Independent States agreement in 1990.